I believe that basic human rights and fundamental freedoms must be upheld and respected around the world, in every nation and in every community. No child should have to suffer simply because of where he or she was born. I also believe that poverty is one of the root causes of extremism around the globe. The United States must be a leader in the international arena through investments in diplomacy, economic and social development, political stability, and democratic representation. In addition, our international policies must be part of our comprehensive national security strategy. In order to ensure security at home, we must address the root causes of extremism by fostering development and freedom abroad.
Foreign Affairs Committee
I am proud to be a member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee. As a committee, we must create an overarching strategy that complements our existing programs and ensures they fit with the democratic and humanitarian goals and ideals of the United States.
As Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on the Western Hemisphere, I strive to strengthen relations with our neighbors in the Hemisphere in order to ensure prosperity. It is an honor to serve as the lead Democrat on a Subcommittee that oversees a portion of the world that is not only strategically critical for our foreign agenda, but a part of the world that is deeply personal to me and many of my constituents. The Subcommittee in Western Hemisphere has jurisdiction over issues pertaining to the countries in South America, North America, and the Caribbean.
I am also a member of the Subcommittee on Europe, Eurasia, and Emerging Threats. This Subcommittee has jurisdiction over matters affecting the relations between the United States and countries in the region.
Each year, millions of people throughout the world are left to suffer without the necessary health care, education, and basic freedoms. It is unacceptable that every year millions of lives are lost due to infectious diseases, malnutrition, and complications of pregnancy and childbirth, and it is unacceptable that thousands of people are threatened, attacked, and silenced simply for standing up for what they believe. I am a strong supporter of assistance that fosters stable governments that provide essential services and respect human rights. That is why I introduced H.R. 1660, the Global Health Innovation Act of 2017. This bill would help to address health care needs around the world and reduce the threat of pandemic diseases. H.R. 1660 passed the House of Representatives and now awaits further action in the Senate.
I believe that the United States is a global leader and should act as such. To promote global security and global prosperity, we must support our basic tenants of opportunity, human rights, and democracy to foster genuine relationships with international actors. I have been a strong advocate for the use of our foreign assistance as an integral part of our overall national security strategy and foreign policy.
More on Foreign Affairs
This week in Washington, I cosponsored a resolution mandating anti-sexual harassment training in the House, attended a Transportation and Infrastructure markup on bills related to disaster recovery and combating human trafficking, met with a former Venezuelan mayor, and met with members of JP Morgan Chase. I also cosponsored a resolution to retain the State and Local Tax (SALT) deduction.
Last week in Washington, I cosponsored a number of bills to enhance veterans’ health, attended two Foreign Affairs Subcommittee hearings which examined Russia as a counterterrorism partner and the effectiveness of the Kingpin Designation Act, and spoke on the floor about the dangerous effects of the Majority’s tax plan. I also met with different groups to discuss legislative priorities.
Last week in Washington, the Republicans introduced a tax plan, I questioned FEMA administrators on their disaster response efforts at a Transportation and Infrastructure Hearing, listened to the testimony of a North Korean defector at a Foreign Affairs Hearing, and held a number of meetings. Additionally, the House voted on legislation to strip funds from critical health programs.
(Washington, DC) – U.S. Rep. Albio Sires (D-NJ), Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on the Western Hemisphere, Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Chairman Emeritus of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (R-FL), Rep. Carlos Curbelo (R-FL), and Rep. Alex X.
While in Washington this week, I urged Speaker Ryan to reauthorize CHIP, cosponsored legislation to protect victims of domestic violence, and sent letters to the Administration asking them to restore policies that facilitate access to affordable contraception. I also voted on the fiscal year (FY) 2018 budget and an Iran sanctions bill in addition to holding a number of meetings.
This week in Washington, I voted to pass disaster assistance for Puerto Rico, cosponsored more legislation to address the gun violence epidemic, met with the Prime Minister of Srpska, and discussed the Iran deal at a Foreign Affairs Committee Hearing.
(Washington, DC) – Rep. Albio Sires (D-NJ), Member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee released the following statement in response to reports that President Trump is considering withholding certification for the Iran Nuclear Agreement, also known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA):
(Washington, D.C.)- Today, Congressman Sires released the following statement regarding the recent events in the region of Catalonia:
While in Washington this week, I cosponsored several pieces of legislation that would make it harder for guns to be converted, managed two bills on the House Floor, and I pressed a panel at the Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee Hearing on the urgent need for investment in transportation infrastructure. I also met with members of the New Jersey Education Association to discuss education priorities.